Japan started the final round with one of the biggest upsets of the tournament so far. They defeated Australia, one of the heavy favourites to win it all, with a 3-0 shutout.
Tadashi SETTSU (W 3-0) set the ton with a great start. He won the pitching duel over major league proven Travis BLACKLEY (L 0-1). The Japanese hurler threw 5 2/3 strong innings. He allowed just five singles, striking out five. The offense delivered some run-support and the bullpen could defend the lead.
Hisayochi CHONE (3-4) opened the scoring in the third with a solo-shot over the fence in left field. Japan added two insurance runs in the seventh and ninth through a RBI-single by Kanya SUZUKI (3-4) and a bases loaded walk by Yasuyuki SAIGO.
Kohhei HASEBE, who had relieved SETTSU, closed out the game with 3 1/3 two-hit innings. He struck out five for the save. It was an impressive performance by their pitching staff.
BLACKLEY pitched pretty well, although he lost. He was charged with five hits, one run and three walks in 5 2/3 innings. He retired four batters with strikeouts.
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